Fresh facts have emerged over the recent clash between men of the Intelligence Response Team of the Nigeria Police and some personnel of the Nigerian Army in Ibbi area of Taraba State.
Recall that the two security agencies have been at loggerheads over the killings of some cops in Taraba State penultimate week ago.
However, latest revelation by the Taraba Truth and Justice Committee showed that there might be a political dimension to the clash.
According to the group, the clash might not be unconnected with the ongoing power tussle between the All Progressives Congress, APC, senatorial candidate, Ishaku Bauka, and his Peoples Democratic Party’s counterpart, Emmanuel Bwacha, that won the election.
The Taraba Truth and Justice Committee said it was able to establish beyond a reasonable doubt that indeed what happened in Ibbi was a fall out of a political disagreement between two prominent politicians who have been trying to outsmart each other using the instrument of the Nigeria Police Force.
In an investigative report released by the group on Friday, the group said the kidnap suspect, Hamisu Wadume might be working for one of the politicians, hence, the clash between the security agencies.
The report signed by its President, Josiah Kifasi, called on the federal government to as a matter of urgency invite top politicians from Taraba South Senatorial District for questioning on what they know about the activities of Hamisu Wadume.
The report reads in full.
The Taraba Truth and Justice Committee a select committee was set up by concerned stakeholders in Taraba state to unravel the mystery surrounding events that led to the death of three IRT operatives who went on a mission to the effect that arrest of an alleged kidnapping kingpin Hamisu Wadume in Taraba state.
The committee was mandated amongst other things to reveal the identities of the key actors in the skirmish, with the view to putting issues in proper perspective and to aid the presidential investigative panel in the task ahead of them.
Consequently, the Taraba Truth and Justice Committee carried out a detailed investigation on the security concerns in Taraba state by interacting with identified key players within Ibbi community and Jalingo the state capital. Critical stakeholders in the state were consulted, and their opinions and positions put side by side with the prevailing realities.
The Taraba Truth and Justice Committee were able to establish that the incident in Ibbi was not a happenstance. It is a result of a history of political gladiators wielding their powers in a bid to outsmart each other. This is on the heels that the battle for the control of Taraba South Senatorial district is a significant factor that might have led to the skirmishes that resulted recently.
The Taraba Truth and Justice Committee were not able to fully establish the fact that Hamisu Wadume is a kidnapper. Though he lives a questionable lifestyle, he is known to be a supporter of political party bigwigs in the state, especially in Taraba South Senatorial District. His known source of livelihood as it were was fish selling and how he was able to amass wealth requires further investigations by the relevant authorities.
The Taraba Truth and Justice Committee were able to identify some grey areas where the relationship between the Nigerian Police and the Nigerian Army went soar in the security architecture of the state.
The Taraba Truth and Justice Committee were able to establish the fact that there is an ongoing battle of supremacy between the Nigerian Police and the Nigerian Army in Taraba state.
The fiercely contested elections in Taraba South Senatorial District between Emmanuel Bwacha of the People’s Democratic Party and Ishaku Bauka of the All Progressives Congress might have some security implications in the district, which houses to house Ibbi.
The Taraba Truth and Justice Committee were able to establish beyond a reasonable doubt that indeed what happened in Ibbi is a fall out of a political disagreement between two prominent politicians who have been trying to outsmart each other using the instrument of the Nigerian Police Force.
It can thus be stated that selfish politicians in the state are responsible for the level of insecurity experienced in the state. They have spared no cost or method, including buying the Nigerian Police over to achieve their political agenda.
The Taraba Truth and Justice Committee states that after an extensive deliberations and interactions, Hamisu Wadume might be working for one of the politicians, which in turn gave the politician undue advantage over the other and as such the Nigerian Police was called in to effect his arrest in an attempt to whittle the political power Hamisu Wadume brings to the table for his paymaster.
This is also on the heels that Hamisu Wadume commands significant grassroots following due to his generous nature, and with this advantage, he has been able to play himself into a position of strength and relevance in the political arena.
The Taraba Truth and Justice Committee were able to establish that part of the issue in the state in the build-up to the 2023 gubernatorial elections where the battle to succeed the incumbent governor has started in earnest. So as such politicians with interest have begun making ways for the actualizing of their political ambitions and one of such ways it was established is a clampdown of those loyal to their perceived opponents.
The Taraba Truth and Justice Committee after a painstaking process, regrettably conclude that the activities of selfish politicians in the state if not curtailed might turn Taraba state into a killing field. The fact that there is an unholy alliance between the Nigerian Police in Taraba State and politicians portends great danger for the sustenance of peace and tranquillity in the state.
The Taraba Truth and Justice Committee in light of the avalanche of information at its disposal with regards to the unfortunate incident in Ibbi that led to the death of three police officers attached to the Inspector General of Police Intelligence Response Team, as a result of this make the following recommendations:
That the federal government should as a matter of urgency invite top politicians from Taraba South Senatorial District for questioning on what they know about the activities of Hamisu Wadume.
That the federal government should investigate the closeness of the hierarchy of the Taraba State Police Command to top politicians in the state and why it took the intervention of the members of the IRT from Abuja to effect an arrest in Taraba state.
The Federal government must mandate the Taraba state government to provide answers on why the activities of political thugs fester unhindered in the state.
That there should be sweeping deployments of police and army officers in the state with immediate effect.
Alleged Fraud: Hon Mutu Never Demanded For Money/Gratification From Me-Witness
The Managing Consultant Of Tarib Consultant LTD the Start witness of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission Bosun Arebuwan in the trial of Hon Nicholas Mutu the former Chairman Of the House Committee on the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) has told a Federal High Court in Abuja Mutu never asked for money or gratification from him.
According to him while being cross examined by Counsel to Mutu, Patrick Ikwueto, SAN “at no time did Hon Mutu demanded or asked for any money, the money paid into Airworld LTD was not a proceed of crime and the money was paid by Starline Consultants the NDDC appointed revenue agent.
Arebuwan further told the court the N400 million to the Redeemed Church Of God for the construction of their Redeem Camp in Lagos is his money and he has the right to do with as he likes.
The prosecution witness also told the court that he has never met Hon Mutu nor know him personally adding”he never solicited, demanded or asked for the money. He said the consultants on their own decided to appreciate the Committee.
Arebuwan also said that he signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Airworld and issued it with an appointment letter to provide IT support for the project, he said that they also signed a Non Disclosure Agreement with Airworld and that the alleged N400 million bribe was for services rendered by Airworld for the project.
He further told the court that MOU and Non Disclosure agreement were all a cover up and that the demand order for payment were all part of the cover up.
The EFCC start witness having admitted to forging documents in a serious criminal matter may have unwittingly removed the foundation from the case as the only evidence before the court as regards to money being paid into the account of Airworld LTD is the demand order which Arebuwan admitted was forged or a cover up.
Also testifying the Managing Director Of Starline LTD Ibinabo Micheal West told the Court that he does not know Hon Mutu and has never met him adding that “Hon Mutu never asked me for anything, it was Arebuwan who requested me to pay the money into the accounts Of Airworld LTD.
Specifically Starline was contracted by the NDDC in 2014 to help in the recovery of 3% of the approved budget of Oil Companies operating in the Niger Delta as part of their contribution to funding of the Commission especially the companies that have not been complying with the provisions of the NDDC Act.
Starline partnered with Tarib Consultants to execute the job and Tarib in turn contracted Airworld to provide the Information Technology components of the project.
The job was done and over N170 billion was recovered by the consultants and The EFCC without any petition on their alleged that they traced N400million to Hon Mutu’s account as a Director Of Airworld LTD but the law allows members of the House of Representatives to be Directors in Companies the Star witness failed in his evidence as he said that Hon Mutu never gave him his account number neither did he ask to be appreciated he maintained that the money was given of his own volition as the N400 million he gave to the Redeemed Church.
Arebuwan maintained that the money was not proceeds of crime, corruption of fraudulent activities but that the money was legitimately earned to which he reserves the rights to decide what to do with it.
Specifically the EFCC had on February 3rd 2020 docked Hon Mutu before the Federal High Court presided over by Justice Giwa Ogunbanjo over alleged graft his companies: Airworld Technologies LTD and Oyien Homes LTD, for allegedly receiving more than N4.8 million gratification from oil companies operating in the Niger Delta region.
He pleaded not guilty to the charges.
Revealed: Why NEMA Staff Moved Against Union Chairman
Fresh facts have emerged as to why the workers sacked the Union Chairman of the National Emergency Management Agency. It was revealed that amongst other anomalies, the workers accused the dismissed union chairman of highhandedness and financial recklessness.
An insider source within the agency, who pleaded anonymity stated that the “ ousted union chairman antics was purely for personal aggrandisement, a trend that has gained notoriety.” He often blackmailed the management for personal benefits just like his recent trip to Italy, which he was not supposed to be part of the team but compelled the management through blackmail.
“They incorporated companies through their cronies with which they lobbied. Comrade Justin Uche behaved like a mini-god when he was the chairman of the Union. He presided over a team that was the most corrupt in the history of NEMA. They were in the habit of paying themselves bogus and undocumented allowances that were not accounted for. When confronted, Comrade Uche would send other members of the Exco to threaten the workers.”
Another source conversant with the events that led to the sack of the Exco led by Justin Uche stated that they used their office to intimidate and harass the management of NEMA by soliciting for contracts in the agency.
“Justin and his gang were marauders. They were after their interest and not the benefit of the workers. They incorporated companies with which they lobbied for contracts in the agency. If these companies are not shortlisted, they resort to blackmail and other despicable acts unbecoming of union leaders in a critical agency like NEMA.
“The workers of NEMA were tired of his atrocities and decided to take the bull by the horns. Of course, this did not go down well with him, and he has been fighting dirty. But the workers would not budge because of the support it has extended to the caretaker committee in place.”
A credible source in the Exco secretariat confided in this medium that the era of Justin Uche is gone for good as the caretaker committee in place has hit the ground running and has the total support of the workers. “The workers have absolute confidence in the caretaker committee, and this much has witnessed some level of calmness in the agency since the caretaker committee was inaugurated.
It was also gathered that the director-general of NEMA, Engr. Mustapha Maihaja has expressed concern over the issues in the Union and has sued for calm and caution. The director-general has called on stakeholders to intervene to restore sanity in the system.
A source in the office of the director-general stated that the DG has been reaching out to several stakeholders to intervene in the crisis rocking the Union.
“The DG is visibly sad and wants a speedy resolution of the issues. He has reached out to several people, and the responses received so far are positive. As a peace-loving man, the DG believes the rancor was uncalled for, especially at a time that humanitarian crisis in the country is becoming alarming due to the activities of insurgents.”
“The DG believes that all hands should be on deck in this critical period for the agency with its level of involvement in humanitarian interventions in North-East.
In a similar development, it is understood that the caretaker committee of the Union is considering joining the Amalgamated Trade Union with it’s over 500 members. It was gathered that this development is because the Trade Union Congress (TUC), instead of maintaining neutrality in the ongoing crisis, it is instead of taking sides with the sacked Excos led by Justin Uche.
A source in the know of events stated that the plans had reached an advanced stage, and baring all unforeseen circumstances; the caretaker committee would lead the Union into the Amalgamated Trade Union.
“The Trade Union Congress is taking sides with the sacked Excos, and this has further heightened the tension in the Union. This has not gone down well with the generality of workers, and they have consequently pledged their loyalty to whatever decision the caretaker committee takes.”
Close watchers of the event strongly believe that NEMA contractors are behind the ongoing disputes as those loyal to Justin Uche have refused to give peace a chance. It was stated that the contractors that have benefited from the influence wielded by the Justin Uche led Exco has vowed to do all possible to ensure that activities of NEMA are disrupted.
This position was corroborated by a cross-section of NEMA workers that recently staged a solidarity march in support of the presidency and the DG of NEMA in the fight against insurgency.
The Association of Senior Staff Union of the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) arising from its annual congress in Abuja recently embarked on a solidarity rally around the city in support of the management of the agency, which is commended for delivering on its objectives.
The new Caretaker Chairman, Comrade Yinka Agaba, said that the workers are pleased and impressed with the efforts of the Director-General, Engr. Mustapha Maihaja and other stakeholders of the agency in the restoration of lasting peace and sanity to the Northeast region and other parts of the country.
Agaba said that, as civil servants who have the responsibility to serve Nigeria, it was incumbent on the workers to stand up for fairness and truth and commend the agency’s leadership where it had discharged its mandate adequately.
He assured that the Union would always stand up for good leadership, efficiency, and the massive investment of government in the social development of the people affected by the agency’s mandate.
“We would no longer keep mute when good conscience and truth are circumvented. All the self-serving individuals whose interests are at variance with public good and governance will no longer be allowed to decimate our efforts and goodwill. We shall not allow further erosion of the ethics of public service and governance,” Agaba further said.
Attempts to reach the DG or the TUC President proved abortive as calls and SMS made to their lines were not answered.
N16m Disappears in Katsina SSG Office, Two Detained
A director and cashier in the Office of the Secretary to the Katsina state Government Alhaji Muhammed Inuwa have been arrested by the police in connection with the disappearance of N16m from the office.
Sources said police picked up the duo after it was discovered that the office had been burgled by unknown persons who allegedly carting away the money at the weekend.
The office is located within the state secretariat complex at Dandagoro, Katsina.
The sources also revealed that the stolen money was part of the fund set aside for the May and June, 2019 allowances of the graduates engaged by the state government to teach in public schools under the S-Power Scheme.
The payment was supposed to commence on Monday, it was learnt.
All efforts made by our correspondent to reach spokesman for the police in the state, SP Gambo Isah, for comments were unsuccessful.
He neither answered our correspondent’s calls nor replied to his text message sent to him over the incident.
The Director of Media in the SSG’s office, Abdullahi Yaardua, also failed to reply to the text message sent to him over the matter.
He also failed to return our correspondent’s calls to his mobile phone.
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